Monday, September 7, 2020

Kouri Kous La - Running The Race

“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” —Hebrews 12:1-2

I heard a wonderful message yesterday about faith.  As Christians, we have been called to a life of faith and it IS like running in a race. I don’t know if you have ever run in a race. Certainly we have all run at some time in our lives. But running in a race is different. Running in a race requires that you push yourself beyond what you think you can do. Maybe even doubt that you can make it to the finish line. Lungs burning. Legs aching. Mind racing. Heart pounding. You can hear your feet has they land on the ground beneath them. You can hear the sound of other feet – behind you – getting louder and louder as someone catches up to you and maybe passes you.  Running like that is a discipline.  It is not something you do naturally. It is something that you choose to do.

So when Hebrews says Jesus endured – we can get a sense of Jesus, the man, approaching the cross.  He endured hardship knowing what was waiting at the finish line. Faith means to endure life. Keeping our eyes fixed on the Promise. Faith does not mean that we somehow are able to avoid – Lungs burning, legs aching, mind racing, heart pounding. It means that we are able to endure all of that – endure whatever life may bring. I don’t like hills – well up-hills anyway.  Gravity comes into play – the steeper the hill – the harder it is to overcome gravity. Down-hills – now that is another thing. Gravity is your friend when you are running down hills.  You encounter  down hills much less often in life that you do up hills. I found it helpful to fix my eyes on something no matter how hard the climb. To fix my eyes on it and run to it.  Then fix my eyes on the next thing. With faith – we fix our eyes on Jesus. (Looking unto Jesus) Jesus is our second wind.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” – Philippians 4:13

Jesus does not run the race for us. But He ran the race before us. Our success in this life as Christians is wholly dependent upon faith and focus.  Like a runner – we must train ourselves – be disciplined. To be ready for the big race – we must run every day.  We must “lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us”. That is a deliberate action – just like lacing up your running shoes – rain or shine – hot or cold – and hitting the road.  You can’t just go for a jog on Sundays and call it good enough.  That will not prepare you for the next hill.

By Faith Alone By His Grace Alone And For His Glory Alone

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